MCC has little trouble with Baldwin

Manistee Catholic Central’s Haley Doyle scores during the first quarter of Tuesday’s win against Baldwin. (Matt Wenzel/News Advocate)

MANISTEE — Following a close loss at Shelby on Monday night, Manistee Catholic Central had to turn around and face Baldwin on Tuesday.

The challenge for the Sabers was to try and match the intensity they brought against a solid Class B team, against a one-win league opponent.

“I’ve seen that many times when you have a really good night and you feel you played really well and played up to the talent of who they’re playing,” said MCC coach Todd Erickson, “and the next game is really flat.”

Although the Sabers had a sluggish start, they regrouped and were able to coast late for a 52-22 West Michigan D League win against the Panthers.

“It’s kind of hard to come out strong when you’re not playing a team that’s as strong as you,” said MCC junior Haley Doyle. “I’m not trying to sound mean or anything … ”

Doyle led the Sabers (10-9, 7-6 WMD) with 10 points and nine rebounds, Ashlyn Jansma had nine points and seven steals while Hannah Janicki and Mimi Modjeski scored seven apiece.

Alex Torres scored a game-high 16 points for the Panthers (1-14, 0-13 WMD), although nobody else on her team had more than two.

“She’s our senior that has been our leader the whole year,” Baldwin coach Antoinette Rewa said of Torres. “She pushes the ball very well, she’s very athletic and a great rebounder as well.”

Although MCC’s full-court press resulted in eight first-quarter turnovers for Baldwin, the Sabers missed a number of easy looks early and led just 3-2 midway through the first quarter.

“There’s no excuse for missed layups and missed put-backs on rebounds,” Erickson said.

The pressure, however, continued to be effective and the Sabers started making shots en route to a 14-4 lead after the first quarter.

“As a team we’re still working on thinking ahead,” Rewa said. “… They have to work past the play and find those openings with talking to each other and communication.”

Six different Sabers scored in the second quarter as MCC took a 30-8 lead into halftime and called off the press in the second half. The Sabers even used a trio of JV players in the game.

While MCC pushed its lead to more than 30 in the third quarter, Torres continued to knock down shots and scored 10 in the second half.

“I think Alex Torres is one the best guards in the conference,” Erickson said. “She’s a very talented young lady.”

MCC will wrap up the regular season at Onekama on Thursday in a preview of next Monday’s Class D district quarterfinal at Brethren.

“It’s sad we have to play them (two games in a row),” Erickson said. “I’m sure (Onekama coach Nathan Bradford’s) not happy about it either.”

Visit the photo gallery to see more photos from this game.

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